Alex Palou was the fastest driver in the second IndyCar practice session of Friday, putting his Chip Ganassi Racing Honda at the top of the timesheets.

The 2021 series champion lapped the IMS road course in 1:09.9383, which was a hair slower than Friday morning’s best time.

That discrepancy was mostly on account of the types of tires used, and every team chose to save their soft red-walled tires until the qualifying session later in the day.

Another factor was the cloudy conditions, which made for a much more humid session than the morning run.

Christian Lundgaard was once again the second fastest, and he attributed his pace to a well-balanced car.

He stated that everything has just felt locked in since the car rolled off the truck, and he admitted to letting himself dream of winning his first IndyCar race later this weekend.

The third fastest driver was Pato O’Ward, who followed up his chart-topping drive from the morning with another solid effort in his Arrow McLaren Chevy.

Marcus Armstrong was the only driver in the top five spots that was not there in the morning run, and the rookie was among those that seemed to have nothing wrong with his car so far this weekend.

Rounding out the top five was Jack Harvey, who matched his morning run by putting a second RLL Honda in the top spots.

Helio Castroneves had a disappointing session, and his Honda powerplant was smoking heavily as he pulled into the pits halfway through, just seven laps into his run.

The veteran also had a brand new engine fitted at the start this weekend, and it was slated to be his Indy 500 qualifying motor, adding to the costly nature of his afternoon.

His Meyer Shank team will be scrambling in the garage to install another new engine before qualifying, which is only two hours after practice wrapped up.

Andretti Autosport seems to be struggling to find the correct setup this weekend, and Kyle Kirkwood’s 13th place in the second practice session was the highest among his team.

The true pace of the 27-car field will be sorted out this afternoon, with knockout qualifying taking place starting at 4:00 PM Eastern Time. Small showers are expected to build around that time, though confidence in that projection is low.

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